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Pittsburgh Laurels & Lances

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Thursday, Nov. 14, 2013, 8:55 p.m.

An observation: Investigators say the 16-year-old former Brashear High School student who allegedly opened fire near the Beechview school on Wednesday, wounding three other students, supposedly was exacting revenge for a drug-related robbery and assault. This incident speaks tragic volumes to the insidious pathologies of modern, broken society. Where it ends, we do not know. But where it must begin to be addressed is in the home — “the home,” a concept that must be revived if civil society is to survive.

Laurel: To Clint Hurdle. The Pirates manager was characteristically humble and humorous in his reaction to being named National League Manager of the Year. He won the honor this week in a runaway vote by the nation's baseball writers. In three years, Mr. Hurdle led the Bucs from being a perennial loser to the playoffs. Our heartiest congratulations to a skipper who redefines the term “class act.”

On the “Watch List”: Pittsburgh Mayor-elect Bill Peduto is proposing an early retirement plan for 132 positions with full pension benefits. The intimation is that dead wood needs to be cleared. That's necessary and laudable. But if there are “dead wooders,” why reward them with the full pension they do not deserve? If Mr. Peduto wants to create the culture of excellence he professes he wants, he should reward excellence, not poor performance.

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